12/12/2012

Nurse involved in royal phone prank was found hanged, say reports

NurseThe nurse who was the victim of a prank call to the Duchess of Cambridge was found hanged, according to reports.

Jacintha Saldanha, 46, was found dead in the nurses' quarters near King Edward VII hospital in London last Friday, leaving behind a note for her husband, Benedict Barboza, and their teenaged children Junal and Lisha.

Sources for various UK media outlets, including the Guardian and Sky News, have confirmed that Saldanha's body was discovered hanged in her room. A post-mortem was completed Wednesday and results will be released Thursday.

Saldanha was the nurse who answered the phone from two Australian DJs who were impersonating the Queen and Prince Charles in a prank call. She spent just a few seconds on the line with them before transferring the call to the another nurse stationed on the floor where the duchess was being treated for acute morning sickness. The prank call continued for a few minutes as a nurse answered some questions about Kate's condition.

Three days later, Saldanha, who had worked at the hospital for four years, took her life. According to the Daily Mail, her family was unaware of her involvement in the hoax until after her death. The nurse's family lived in Bristol and she had been staying in London and commuting back home on her days off.

FamilyAnger was immediately directed at the 2Day FM radio station, which has pulled the program and its hosts, Mel Greig and Michael Christian, off the air. In the wake of the tragedy, the station, while saying it did nothing illegal, has promised a minimum $500,000 to Saldanha's family.

The family, right, plans to have burial rites for Saldanha in her native India. They are demanding that the hospital conduct an inquiry into the circumstances around her death.

"She clearly loved her job, loved her work, cared deeply about the health of her patients, and what's happened is a complete tragedy," British Prime Minister David Cameron told Parliament on Thursday.  "There are many lessons that need to be learned."

MORE: Radio station may have broken law, experts say

Dy
In this image made off video footage recorded Monday for the  program "A Current Affair" by Australia's Channel Nine, radio DJs Michael Christian, left, and Mel Greig express their remorse at the death of Jacintha Saldanha after they made a prank phone call to the hospital.

 

Comments

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It is unacceptable to make pranks that and then when a tragedy results just say I was just a joke. You are adults and should take responsibility for your actions. The station manager, the station legal and anyone else responsible for authorizing this prank should also be held accountable. I guess they are by the public!

this whole this is very sad but i dont think there's a connection with the radio prank. A. she may have transferred the call but she was not the one who chatted with the DJs, I find that far worse than transferring the call B. the 'Queen' called Kate her granddaughter, Kate isn;t her granddaughter, she's her granddaugher in law. C. the woman obviously had a lot more going in her life and either this call was the straw the broker her back or the timing is concidental. Either way I feel bad for her survivors

I love a good prank as much as the next person, but there is a difference between a prank and a cruel joke. A prank has a 'Gotcha!' moment, when a hidden camera or mic is revealed. The reaction of the person who was pranked is as funny - if not more so - than the prank itself. This was a cruel joke. Because the higher-ups at the station gave the go=ahead to air this juvenile stunt, they are just as responsible as the asinine DJs. They are all sooo sorry. As my mother used to say, "It's always fun and games until someone gets hurt." While I agree that Jacintha must have had something else going on, the fact is that she is deceased. Her children no longer have a mother, and being teens, this is the critical age when kids need their mother the most. The timing of this is horrible as well. Now Christmas will always be a sad time for the family. The whole thing is so tragic.

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